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Gypsies and Travellers: Accommodation Research

Lord Avebury asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Whitty: My department will be commissioning research on this subject early in 2001, asking for a report by the summer of 2002. The research will investigate whether additional accommodation of all kinds, including group housing, is required.

Least Developed Countries: Duty Free Access for Sensitive Products

Lord Moynihan asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Minister for Science, Department of Trade and Industry (Lord Sainsbury of Turville): The Government agree with the product coverage proposed by the European Commission under the

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initiative to improve market access for the world's Least Developed Countries (LDCs). However, we recognise the sensitivity of three products--sugar, rice and bananas--and therefore also support the Commission's proposal to phase in duty free treatment for these three products gradually.

Lord Moynihan asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they would support an in-depth analysis conducted by the European Commission of the comprehensive effects of quota free and duty free access and for the outcome to be publicly debated.[HL37]

Lord Sainsbury of Turville: The European Commission is already in the process of producing an impact study of its proposal, as requested by member states. If the study is published by the Commission, we would welcome it being publicly debated.

Community Legal Service Partnerships: Innovation

Baroness Howells of St Davids asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What plans the Lord Chancellor has to encourage innovation in community legal service partnership areas.[HL232]

The Lord Chancellor (Lord Irvine of Lairg): In view of the success achieved in developing community legal service partnerships, I have decided to make additional funds available, within the Legal Services Commission's budget, to support innovative initiatives at local level. £15 million over the next three years will be earmarked for a partnership innovation budget. Grants from the budget will be available, on a joint funding basis, for projects which have the support of their local community legal service partnership. My department is today issuing a consultation paper which will enable us to take account of the views of funders and providers of local legal services in finalising the details of the budget.

Publicly Funded Family Mediation

Baroness Gould of Potternewton asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When the Legal Services Commission will publish the results of Professor Gwynn Davis's research into publicly funded family mediation implemented under Part 3 of the Family Law Act 1996.[HL233]

The Lord Chancellor: The research report Monitoring Publicly Funded Family Mediation has been published by the Legal Services Commission today. Copies have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses. The Government are grateful to Professor Davis for his detailed and helpful report, and we will be considering its implications carefully.

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